ORIOLES QUICK WRAP
Score: Pirates 6, Orioles 5
Recap: Miguel Gonzalez was charged with four runs and six hits in 4 2/3 innings, with one walk, no strikeouts and a hit batter. Andrew McCutchen homered off him in the first and Gregory Polanco took him deep in the fourth. Darren O’Day replaced Gonzalez and gave up a two-run homer to Starling Marte. Rule 5 pick Joey Rickard singled and had an RBI double in his first two at-bats. Paul Janish led off the fifth inning with his first home run. He also singled and doubled. Vance Worley threw two scoreless innings, with a hit and two walks. Zach Britton retired the side in order in the eighth. The Orioles got within a run in the ninth on RBIs by L.J. Hoes and Cedric Mullins, who was stranded at third after doubling home a run and advancing on a passed ball.
Need to know: The Orioles are 5-14-4. Gonzalez threw 70 pitches, 46 for strikes. He picked off Francisco Cervelli to end the third. Gonzalez induced only five ground balls, including a sacrifice bunt. Three of the grounders came within his last four batters before departing. The Orioles received leadoff singles in each of the first four innings, two from Caleb Joseph. Nolan Reimold grounded into double plays in his first two at-bats. Plate umpire Bill Welke was hit twice by pitches in the fifth inning.
On deck: Thursday, vs. Pirates, in Sarasota, 1:05 p.m.
BRADENTON, Fla. - Paul Janish has hit seven home runs in the majors, the last coming in 2010. He’s totaled 40 in the minors, the last coming in 2014.
He flexed a little muscle this afternoon against the Pirates’ Jeff Locke, easily clearing the left field fence leading off the top of the fifth inning. Starling Marte took one step back and slammed on the brakes. This one wasn’t coming back.
Janish’s first spring home run came after he singled in his first at-bat and reduced the Pirates’ lead to 4-3. Janish (twice), Caleb Joseph (twice) and Joey Rickard reached base as leadoff hitters within the first five innings.
Janish just happened to circle them.
Miguel Gonzalez worked a spring-high 4 2/3 innings, allowing four runs and six hits. He walked one, struck out none, surrendered two home runs and hit a batter.
Andrew McCutchen and Gregory Polanco hit solo shots off Gonzalez, who’s posted a 12.56 ERA this spring. He threw 70 pitches, 46 for strikes.
John Jaso led off the fifth with a walk, but was thrown out by Joseph attempting to steal second base.
Darren O’Day replaced Gonzalez with two outs and gave up a double to David Freese and two-run homer to Starling Marte, increasing the Pirates’ lead to 6-3. Marte’s ball kept carrying to left-center field. Rickard and Nolan Reimold both thought they had a shot at it.
Earlier today, Orioles manager Buck Showalter knocked on his desk to prevent jinxing Dylan Bundy after he talked about the right-hander’s impressive spring. Bundy has allowed one unearned run and one hit in his last four appearances covering 5 1/3 innings.
“It’s one of those things that if you told me where we’d be where are with him right now, not that I’d be surprised, I’d be real happy with it,” Showalter said.
“You can tell everything with him. I was kidding with him today down in the bullpen. I said, ‘You’re in a perfect ambush situation now.’ He said, ‘What do you mean?’ I said, ‘An umpire came up to me yesterday, to Wally (Dave Wallace), and said ‘This guy is really good. Who’s this guy?’
“I told him, ‘You’re back in the they-don’t-who-you-are (mode). You need to change your name to Rocco Johnson and grow a Fu Manchu and you can ambush people for about a month before they figure out that’s him, that’s Dylan Bundy.’ He thought that was funny.”
Bundy is out of options and must begin the season in the bullpen. He’s pitching like he intends to do more than just be stashed in it.
“I try and slow down my enthusiasm,” Showalter said. “He’s been through so much. As much as we want him to be what we think he’s capable of, imagine what it’s been like for him. Who knows, maybe at some point during the season, if he gets to that 30-, 40-inning mark, we could start doing some things as a starter.”
A starter later this season?
“We were talking about it today that who knows, it could be something we look at at some point. It’s right to hope that he could get back to that,” Showalter said.
“You never know. I’m just throwing every possibility out there. You don’t want to get ahead of yourself and forget where you come from. Sometimes, you need to be happy where you are and what you’ve got instead of trying to keep pushing it. I’m saying it’s probably not going to happen, but I’m not going to say for sure.”
Asked whether he’s thinking more about Bundy as a starter in 2017, Showalter grinned and gave the media a little more to chew on before today’s game.
“Or September,” he replied. “Or August. Or July. We’re trying to win here, right? Let’s go one step at a time with him.”
The next step for Bundy might be working in back-to-back games this spring.
“I’m not sure what Wally has in store,” Showalter said. “We might, we might. It’s hard to not overpush it. It’s going so well with him. He’s crossed a lot of thresholds.
“I’ll probably talk to Wally about that today. We were going to talk to him when he got toward the end of the spring.”